It’s been a long time coming, but Apple has officially begun closing the chapter on iTunes after 18 long years. At the Worldwide Developer's Conference (WWDC), Apple announced that Catalina, the next version of the macOS would omit iTunes in favor of three separate desktop apps: Apple Music, Apple Podcasts, and Apple TV.
The move to phase out iTunes after its almost two-decades long run did not come as a huge surprise to most people. Music, TV, and podcasts have had their dedicated places for a while now, and an all-encompassing hub like iTunes just started to feel a bit overwhelming. Apple even poked fun at the laundry list of capabilities it tacked onto iTunes over the years and said their team was “considering” adding a calendar, web browsing, and email functionality to the app.
Despite its downfall, iTunes truly had a good run. It entered the world at a time when piracy and file-sharing sites were plaguing the music industry, and turned us into more honest music listeners. For the longest time, iTunes dominated the digital download space with its 99-cent tracks from top artists around the world. As the years went on though, streaming services became the preferred way to access entertainment, and the need for a buy-to-own platform like iTunes seemed much less valuable.